Legal speak, or legalese, is a language generally understood by members of the legal fraternity, but things can get interesting when cross-cultural elements get in the way and cause problems for legal professionals.
Most translators, particularly newbies, wonder how much time should be spent on marketing. Is there a certain percentage of a translator's working day that should be spent on marketing, or should translators market themselves even when they don’t necessarily need new projects?
Cows have been reared for thousands of years around the world for their meat, milk, and skin, and the cow is considered to be of great value to the economy of many countries. In countries like the United Kingdom and the United States, calling a woman a ‘cow’ is a derogatory term. However, if you were to do the same in India you could well be thanked for the compliment! The reason is that, across most of India, cows are considered to be harmless and gentle.
When we, as humans, are attempting to express our feelings, we commonly resort to feelings and experiences that we believe are common to all people. Obviously, this will only have an effect if the other person’s background is similar to ours, which is a fairly safe assumption to make when you’re within a particular cultural group. However, when you’re speaking across cultures and across languages, it’s not safe to make these assumptions and, doing so, can create a breakdown in communications.
The Tshanglas people are more commonly known as the Sharchops: these people are considered to be the aboriginal inhabitants of eastern Bhutan. The Tshanglas people speak Tshanglakha and, according to historians, are the descendants of Lord Brahma. The Tshanglas people are typically inhabitants of Trashigang, Mongar, Pema Gasthel, Trashiyangtse, and Samdrup Jongkhar. The Tshanglas rear domestic animals to supplement their living and cultivate rice, maize, barley, wheat and vegetables. The women’s main occupation is weaving, and they produce beautiful silk and raw silk fabrics.
In South Asia lies the country of Bhutan. Bhutan is a remote, tiny (but legendary) Kingdom lying in the eastern Himalayas, nestling between its powerful neighbors – China and India. Bhutan is a strikingly beautiful country: its people know it as Druk Yul - Land of the Thunder Dragon.
Most translators seem to start out as generalists, meaning that they feel they have no option but to accept assignments offered to them in all areas of translation. This hardly seems fair because no-one, and least of all a beginner translator, is automatically an expert on every subject matter.
If you’re not a regular translation client, then you can’t be expected to understand the names and terms used in the translation industry. For example, if you need a document translated, who should you be communicating with? Is it a Project Manager, an Account Manager, or should you approach a translator directly?
If a foreign customer is confused about what meal to select and order, they’re more likely to complain about the food they receive and the restaurant service in general. Complaints and misunderstandings are unpleasant for both the customers and the restaurant staff, and create a general feeling of unease throughout the restaurant.
One of the more frustrating experiences for travelers is ordering food in restaurants in a new country. When you think about it, the restaurant’s menu is the basis of communication between the restaurant and its customers, so today we’re seeing more restaurants offering menus to their customers that have been translated into various languages. Below we’ve listed the main reasons why hotel restaurants should have their menus translated.
A professional is a person who does something for a living; a person who has the right skills and is committed to continual professional development. A professional translator is someone who understands the two cultures, strives to find the right words, and who has excellent writing skills. Unless you’re able to make a career out of translating and are generating a good monthly income from your translation skills, then you’re still an aspiring professional.